Remarketing Best Practices: A Helpful Guide
Remarketing/Retargeting is one of the most important parts of any digital campaign. Remarketing allows you to re-engage your site visitors, email subscribers, and social followers to the point of converting them into leads or customers. Remarketing done right gives you the opportunity to efficiently nurture your audience to the exact conversion action you want them to take. Remarketing done wrong wastes money, breaks the “funnel,” and loses your customers.
Before I dive into some best practice tips for remarketing, I want to talk more about the funnel. The funnel is the backbone of any remarketing campaign. It’s the roadmap that your visitors will follow when engaging with your website and must be laid out clearly or customer drop-off will become an issue.
We’ve already written plenty about the fundamentals of a marketing funnel - I encourage you to check those articles out if you aren’t familiar! The main message you should understand from these is the cold vs warm vs hot parts of the funnel.
Two more resources that you should read before you continue any further is Ryan’s quick guide on how to create remarketing audiences per traffic source in Google Analytics and Rizza’s guide on how to create custom audiences in the Facebook Ad platform. Audiences are the lifeblood of any remarketing effort, and there are a few that you need to have in your accounts.
- Site visitors - 30 days
- Site visitors - 60 days
- Purchasers/Lead Converters - 30 days
- Purchasers/Lead Converters - 60 days
- Purchasers/Lead Converters - 90 days
Like I mentioned before, audiences are the core of all things remarketing. If you take anything from this article, remember that you need to have a good understanding of the different audiences you want to target and how you should speak to them.
Once you’ve visualized your funnel, you have a much better idea of where remarketing can benefit your campaign. Do you want to re-engage visitors of a certain page with a free downloadable? Remarketing. Do you want to offer a discount code to past purchasers who haven’t visited the site in 60+ days? Remarketing. It all depends on your overall business objectives and what the ideal outcome of the campaign should be.
On average, traffic won’t convert into a paying customer/lead until they’ve visited the site 2-3 times. Most people online take time to research what they want to buy/sign up for in order to find the option that best fits their needs. You need to make sure that your remarketing strategy fits with the average person’s online habits.
For the sake of this blog, I’ll ignore the ‘cold’ part of the funnel and jump straight to warm. If you aren’t familiar with the cold/warm/hot terminology, stop reading this blog and go click one of the two I linked above like I told you to!
So, let’s assume you’ve already driven some traffic to your site. Most likely, they window-shopped and then left the page without buying or signing up anything. What do you do now? If you set up your audiences correctly, that traffic should be successfully bucketed into your ‘Site Visitors’ remarketing audience. You’ll be able to create ads made specifically for people who came to your website without taking action prompting them to do so.
I think that this is the most delicate part of the funnel, and it’s where the nurturing comes in. This traffic is familiar with your brand, products/services, and website, but they haven’t converted into a customer. Depending on what you’re selling, you might have to do a little extra work to pull down the traffic to the conversion point. For expensive service based clients, we’ve found success with pushing educational (about the service) content to our mid-funnel audiences. Ecomm traffic usually responds to an offer of free shipping or 10% off their first order. Anything to get your foot in the door!
Be sure to exclude all purchasers/lead converters from any remarketing efforts! No point in wasting ad dollars by serving ads to people that have already taken the action you want them to take. For lead generation campaigns, the buck stops here. You have the lead’s information and it’s up to the salesman to close or disqualify the lead. If you’re most ecommerce businesses, you’re just getting started!
“Most ecommerce businesses” refers to businesses that have a product that can be bought multiple times. Maybe you’re an organic food company, and your audience likes to stock up on flour every 2 months. Maybe you’re a shoe company, and you’ve found success with marketing different styles of shoes to past customers. People who have already bought from you are always the most qualified audience - which is why we created those past converters audiences above. They’re familiar with your brand, they like it, and they’ll buy from you again.
If you’re just getting your feet wet with remarketing, these tips should help you get a solid conceptual understanding of how it works on a technical level. There are about 1000 different ways you can approach a remarketing strategy, so play around with the engines and test what works best for your business. The best of the best digital marketers know remarketing like the back of their hand and implement it in every single effort. Kudos to taking the first step!